PELHAM, N.Y. Michael Vingo grew up in Pelham but now lives in Rockland County. He returned to town this August to set up a deli on a corner that has seen many in the past few years.
Vingo opened the 5th & Lincoln Deli at the location of what was previously the Hip Café on 5th. Vingo said that several delis have existed on that corner under different owners in the past decade.
The Pelham native, who attended Colonial Elementary School and Hutchinson Elementary School and graduated from Pelham Memorial High School in 2001, decided to return to his roots when he saw the space for sale online.
"If I'm going to open a business anyway, I might as well open a business in Pelham since I was born here," Vingo said.
The deli opened on Aug. 3 and Vingo has already seen several old friends who have stopped by the deli to greet him. He said that his friend's parents, whom he had not seen in years, also came to his store.
Vingo runs the deli with only the help of his wife. His brother helped him in the first few days, but his union called him back to work.
The owner said that the last two weeks of August have been challenging, but repeat customers have kept business steady. Chicken cutlets, grilled chicken and fried eggplant have been popular choices.
"I can't even make (them) fast enough," Vingo said.
Despite the turnover rate of delis on the corner of Fifth Avenue and Lincoln Avenue in the past few years, Vingo said he will try to stay put for a while.
"I'm hoping to change that bad luck in this spot," Vingo said.
Contact Pelham reporter Andrew Meola at email@example.com.
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